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Taxi drivers' demands of basic salary "reasonable": Namibian Employers Federation
 (2017-03-24)

WINDHOEK, March 23 (Xinhua) -- After the two-day demonstration by taxi drivers in Windhoek, capital of Namibia, Xinhua spoke to the Secretary General of the Namibian Employers Federation (NEF), Tim Parkhouse Thursday to find out whether the drivers have a legitimate point to feel aggrieved.

Earlier this week, the President of the Namibia Transport and Taxi Union (NTTU), Werner Januarie stated that taxi drivers wanted to be treated like other employees and receive a basic salary of 4,000 Namibian dollars (307 U.S. dollars) per month. He also feels that taxi drivers are not liable to pay for traffic fines as those are the employers' responsibility.

"The money which the taxi drivers are demanding is a reasonable amount, it is almost a minimum wage," Parkhouse said.

"But it is very difficult to control what kind of money taxi drivers generate for their employers. So much depends on the initial arrangement between the taxi drivers and their employers and there are thousands of taxi drivers in the country, I wouldn't be surprised if some are getting more than this amount," he added.

He said that it is very difficult to enforce labor law saying that: "even in organizations that have fixed buildings and got a structure, the Ministry of Labor have got difficulties enforcing labor legislation. Let them have a salary of 4,000 Namibian dollars, but who is going to enforce it? Who is going to make sure that they get it?"

Parkhouse further said that it is both the employer and the taxi driver's responsibility to ensure that traffic fines are paid depending on who is at fault for violating the traffic regulations.

"If the taxi driver has been speeding and not driving where he was supposed to then the taxi driver should pay for the fines," he said.

The NEF is the largest and oldest employers' organization in Namibia. It is recognized by the government as the most representative employers' organization in accordance with the International Labor Organization's regulations. Enditem

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